FIA responds to Briatore appeal decision

The FIA has confirmed that it is considering appealing against the Tribunal de Grande Instance’s decision to overturn the lifetime motor sport bans of Flavio Briatore and Pat Symonds.

The French court had ruled that the World Motor Sport Council’s decision to ban the former-Renault employees from working in international motor sport had been unjustified, as both men did not hold competition licenses with the governing body.

Although the FIA acknowledged the court’s verdict, it claimed that the appeal process had not considered the events of the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix and had instead focused on the governing body’s procedures.

“The Court has rejected the claims for damages made by Mr. Briatore and Mr. Symonds and their claim for an annulment of the FIA’s decision.” read a statement issued on the FIA’s official website.

” In particular, the Court did not examine the facts and has not reversed the FIA’s finding that both Briatore and Symonds conspired to cause an intentional crash at the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix.

“However, the Court did question the FIA’s authority to impose bans upon Mr. Briatore and Mr. Symonds for procedural reasons and because they are not FIA licence holders and, according to the Court, are therefore not subject to any FIA rules. The FIA’s ability to exclude those who intentionally put others’ lives at risk has never before been put into doubt and the FIA is carefully considering its appeal options on this point.”

With this in mind, the governing body now appears to be considering launching its own appeal against the verdict and claims that it will not accept the French court’s decision until after consultation.

The statement also revealed that the FIA is planning to introduce measures to prevent such a ruling from being overturned by an outside legal institution ever again.

“The Court s decision is not enforceable until the FIA’s appeal options have been exhausted.  Until then, the World Motor Sport Council s decision continues to apply.

“In addition, the FIA intends to consider appropriate actions to ensure that no persons who would engage, or who have engaged, in such dangerous activities or acts of intentional cheating will be allowed to participate in Formula One in the future.”